Inflation and Ukraine war make it challenging for our beloved v

  • Inflation and Ukraine war make it challenging for our beloved value stores to survive



    Japanese retail chain, Daiso, is known for its S$2 prices. News that it will move to a 15-tier pricing system from S$2.14 to S$25.47 from Sunday (May 1) was met with protests and promises by netizens that they would stop patronising the chain.

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    Daiso attributed this move to a "steady rise in raw material costs and logistics". It’s reasonable to see this as a sign that global inflationary pressures have hit our beloved value stores.

    Both actual and expected inflation have picked up in Singapore. Inflation rose to a 10-year high of 5.4 per cent in March, according to the authorities. A survey run by DBS-SKBI to gauge inflation expectations finds that a cross section of Singaporean households expect inflation to remain elevated.

    Consumers will be more conscious of how inflation shrinks their dollar. To the particularly value conscious, as long as popular discount stores such as Daiso and Valu$ are available for everyday items, including food and household necessities, life may be just fine.

    The COVID-19 pandemic has already brought about massive changes: The global supply chain was disrupted with widespread movement restrictions and border closures. At the same time, governments instituted levels of monetary policy easing comparable only to the aftermath of the 2008 Global Financial Crisis, as well as job support schemes, flexible schedule of loan repayment, and direct cash transfers.